Tuesday, January 22, 2002
This road to Games much easier for Dybvig
This time, Evan Dybvig found a much smoother path to the
Coaches lifted Dybvig off the bubble and into one of the 14
spots awarded on the U.S. Olympic freestyle team Tuesday. It was a
stark contrast from 1998, when the moguls skier was originally left
off the squad, but made it with help of an appeal and an
"I feel like '98 is in the past," said Dybvig, who finished
31st in Nagano. "I wouldn't say I was thinking about that so much.
I've just been replaying what's happened this year. I was thinking
if I didn't make it, I knew I've done as much as possible. But if I
did make it, I believe I deserve it because of all I have done."
Joining Dybvig on the moguls team are 1998 Olympic gold medalist
Jonny Moseley, Travis Mayer and Jeremy Bloom, a scholarship
football player who delayed his enrollment at Colorado for a shot
at the Olympics.
Moseley, Mayer and Bloom filled the three spots awarded
automatically because of results in the current season. Dybvig was
the coaches' discretionary pick.
The women's moguls team features Hannah Hardaway, Shannon
Bahrke, Jillian Vogtli and Ann Battelle, a 34-year-old who made her
fourth Olympics team.
Not making the team was 36-year-old Donna Weinbrecht, the
five-time World Cup champion who came back in hopes of making her
Eric Bergoust, also a 1998 gold medalist, leads the men's
aerials team. He'll be joined by Brian Currutt and Joe Pack, who
are both from Park City, Utah, where the freestyle competition will
be held. Pack was the coaches' second and final discretionary pick.
Brenda Petzold and another Park City resident, Tracy Evans, will
join 2001 U.S. champion Emily Cook on the women's aerials team.
Evans made her third Olympics. Cook's availability is in doubt,
however, because she dislocated two bones in her foot during a
landing in a competition last Friday.
Cook's foot is in a soft cast, and she is immobile right now,
Olympic freestyle coach Jeff Wintersteen said. If Cook can't go,
she will likely be replaced on the team by men's aerialist Jeret
"Some of these athletes were obvious selections, and then there
were incredibly hard choices," Wintersteen said.
He called the choice between Dybvig and Travis Ramos for the
final men's moguls spot "heartwrenching."
The men's moguls team is among the deepest in the world. There
wasn't much separating Dybvig, Ramos and Toby Dawson, to name a
few, when coaches and U.S. Ski and Snowboard Association president
Bill Marolt were looking to fill the fourth spot for moguls.
Dybvig's chances for making the Olympics appeared stymied in the
fall when he tore the anterior cruciate ligament in his right knee.
He has made an amazingly quick recovery, however, and now finds
himself preparing for another Olympics.
It will be a much more enjoyable preparation period than last
The ski team chose to only fill 11 of the 14 available spots on
selection day in 1998, which prompted Dybvig and two others to
appeal the decision. An arbitrator ruled in Dybvig's favor, and he
conceded it wasn't exactly the way he had always dreamed of making
He'll have no such worries this time.
"The best thing I can do now is to ski to my ability, ski well
for my team, and show that the coaches made the right decision,"